Technology Travel

Lyft was wrong on driverless vehicles

Lyft co-founder once predicted in 2021, most rides would be self-driving. That’s really ambitious and maybe COVID-19 got in the way but we are nowhere near that state of things.

In 2016, Lyft co-founder John Zimmer predicted most of the company’s rides would be self-driving within five years, a transformation that would largely eliminate the need for costly drivers.

“I really think in the next two to three years that kind of actual no driver, driverless vehicle will be something you can order pretty easily on the Lyft platform,” he told CNBC last week in Detroit.

Zimmer, 38, said autonomous vehicles, or AVs, will be used in tandem with traditional drivers for the foreseeable future, which is why he is convinced the company is well positioned to grow in both areas.

That cautionary tone marks a shift from six years ago, when Zimmer sent waves across Wall Street and the automotive industry with his prediction that self-driving cars would soon dominate the industry. Some believed at the time the ride-hailing company and others like it — namely, Uber — could eventually eliminate the need for car ownership.

Source: CNBC

It looks like fully-autonomous vehicles are not going to be here any time soon.


Kim Kardashian fined by SEC

Good move to help safe guard regular folks from crypto buying.

SEC fines Kim Kardashian, warns people about buying crypto touted by celebrities

Kim Kardashian will pay a $1.26 million penalty for touting a crypto security without disclosing that she was paid $250,000 to promote the token, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced today. Kardashian agreed to the payment to settle the charges and “agreed to not promote any crypto asset securities for three years,” the SEC said.

Kardashian’s $1.26 million payment includes a $1 million penalty and “approximately $260,000 in disgorgement, which represents her promotional payment, plus prejudgment interest.” Kardashian agreed to the payment “without admitting or denying the findings.” The disgorgement and prejudgment interest “will be distributed to harmed investors, if feasible,” the SEC order said.

Source: Ars

And what is this Ethereum Max thing. It’s confusing that there are so many of these and they all potentially could be rug pulls. Please be careful and only dabble if you know what you are doing.

Stocks Technology

Elon Musk agrees to buy Twitter

Major day for Twitter shareholders, Elon Musk agrees to purchase Twitter at the premium price of $54.20.

Twitter shares surge 22% after Elon Musk revives deal to buy company at original price

Tesla CEO Elon Musk changed course and agreed to buy Twitter for the agreed upon price, according to a filing on Tuesday.

The social media company issued a statement saying it had received the letter and said, “The intention of the Company is to close the transaction at $54.20 per share.”

Source: CNBC

I wonder what changed his mind.

Stocks Travel

Grab aims to break even by H2 2024

It will be interesting to see how Grab make the economics work for Grab rides and food, considering South East Asia is a highly competitive market.

Grab Sees Slowing Growth As It Aims To Break Even By Second Half 2024

Grab Holdings said it’s aiming to breakeven by the second half of 2024 on an adjusted earnings basis before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, although the growth of its business is slowing.

Grab was established 10 years ago, but it’s never managed to turn a profit. Grab’s shares have lost more than 70% of their value since going public on Nasdaq through a merger with Altimeter Capital Management’s SPAC (special purpose acquisition company).

The Singapore-based company said its revenue would grow 45-55% in 2023 on a constant currency basis, which is slower than its forecast for the current year.

Grab has also recently launched a digital bank—called GSX Bank—in Singapore in partnership with Singtel, and has plans to launch two more banks in Indonesia and Malaysia next year. Grab said on Tuesday that it expects the bank to break even by 2026.

Source: Forbes

Uber can finally focus on customer complaints

In the past couple of years, it appears that Uber is working on supply issues. Maybe the company’s drop the ball on the experience itself. I’ve had to wait longer than expected for an Uber right. It seems like this is next in Uber’s list to tackle:

Uber says its chronic shortage of drivers is finally in the rear-view mirror, allowing it to focus on passenger complaints such as cancellations and wait times, according to a top executive at the global ride-hailing group.

The company’s ten largest markets, which together make up more than three-quarters of its bookings, all saw month-on-month driver growth in August, said Andrew Macdonald, Uber’s head of mobility. “That is indicative of a broad-based trend we are seeing around the world,” he added. Globally driver supply is up 70 per cent year-on-year, while the UK hit 85,000 active Uber drivers in August, the highest number ever on the country’s roads.

Resolving its driver shortage has allowed Uber to turn its attention to addressing other customer complaints, including long wait times and drivers who cancel after initially accepting a trip, said Macdonald, a 10-year Uber veteran who took over global responsibility for its ride-hailing business in 2019.

Source: FT

Ikea’s HomeKit hub

I love that Ikea is including HomeKit in their new hub, and even more pleasantly surprised that it is Matter compatible.

Ikea’s updated Homekit-compatible Dirigera smart home hub with Matter support is anticipated to go on sale in Europe in November for under $60.

An online store listing spotted by TechGamingReport shows it will be going on sale in Germany for 59.99 euros. Further research byThe Verge shows the hub as appearing on the Spanish and Norwegian websites as well, with the latter adding sales will “start in November.”

Source: AppleInsider

Ikea’s new Dirigera will also be a Thread device.


iOS 16.1 adds Matter support

Yet another reason to be happy about. Matter support in the upcoming iOS 16.1.

iOS 16.1 adds Matter support

In fact, the latest iOS 16.1 beta 3 release has removed the Matter interface in the Settings app (as seen above). The underlying technology for Matter is still in the beta, per Apple’s release notes. Each subsequent release of a new iOS 16.1 beta has significantly cut down on the number of bugs for Matter.

Source: 9to5mac

Matter is here, finally

This has taken a while. Matter is finally here. I’ve been waiting to deliberating to get new smart home devices and decided to hold back. What I really wanted is interoperability between HomeKit and Alexa devices. Currently I have a subset of devices that are pretty much Alexa exclusive and an Eve Thread device that’s stuck in Apple’s HomeKit.

The Connectivity Standards Alliance, the international community of more than 550 technology companies committed to open standards for the Internet of Things, announced today the release of the Matter 1.0 specification and the opening of the Matter certification program. Member companies who make up all facets of the IoT now have a complete program for bringing the next generation of interoperable products that work across brands and platforms to market with greater privacy, security, and simplicity for consumers.

As part of the Matter 1.0 release, authorized test labs are open for product certification, the test harnesses and tools are available, and the open-source reference design software development kit (SDK) is complete – all to bring new, innovative products to market. Further, Alliance members with devices already deployed and with plans to update their products to support Matter can now do so, once their products are certified.

Source: CSA

Now I’m just gonna hope they upgrade my existing devices to Matter 1.0.

Stocks Technology

Stadia is shutting down

Wow. I expected this but not so fast. Just a month ago, Google was denying Stadia is going to shut down. I guess economics kept up with them.

Google is shutting down Stadia

Google is shutting down Stadia, its cloud gaming service. The service will remain live for players until January 18th, 2023. Google will be refunding all Stadia hardware purchased through the Google Store as well as all the games and add-on content purchased from the Stadia store. Google expects those refunds will be completed in mid-January.

Last year, rumors abounded it would shut down after the number of games released to the platform slowed and the company shuttered its in-house game development studios. When those rumors popped up again this year, Google insisted that Stadia was not shutting down. “Rest assured we’re always working bringing more great games to the platform and Stadia Pro,” the company said in a tweet. Which was true… until today.

Source: The Verge
Stocks Technology

Twilio and anti-racist layoffs

Wait what does that even mean? Layoffs being anti-racist. Does that mean you layoff people of majority races in the company?

Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson announced in a message to all employees that 11% of its workforce would be laid off, stating that they made the layoffs through an “Anti-Racist” and “Anti-Oppression” lens.

“As you all know, we are committed to becoming an Anti-Racist/Anti-Oppression company,” Lawson wrote. “Layoffs like this can have a more pronounced impact on marginalized communities, so we were particularly focused on ensuring our layoffs – while a business necessity today – were carried out through an Anti-Racist/Anti-Oppression lens.”

The company had 7,867 employees as of Dec. 31, 2021, according to its December annual report.

In the past year, Twilio shares have declined in value by over 78%.

Source: Fox Business

Maybe they are laying off by the same proportion of people based in California or USA. I haven’t got a clue but love to hear an explanation.